A £60m pot of pension credit is going unclaimed in Glasgow new figures show.

There are around 20,000 pensioners in the city who are either not claiming the cash or are unaware they are eligible for it.

The money is a top up of the state pension to ensure pensioners have a minimum income.

It ensures single pensioners have at least £167.25 a week and pensioner couples have £255.25.

But just as important it means those who receive it may be eligible for other benefits including help with council tax, rent or allowances for caring.

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Chris Stephens, SNP MP for Glasgow South West hosted an awareness event in Govan with local organisations and charities to try and encourage more people to claim the cash they are entitled to.

In South West there is more than £9m going unclaimed according to analysis by accountants Grant Thornton.

Mr Stephens said: “Pensioners living in poverty is not a myth, it is a reality for far too many.

“For those pensioners, Pension Credit provides a vital top-up and gives them access to much-needed income.

“However, 40% of those eligible in our communities are missing out on Pension Credit for which they are entitled because they wrongly think it isn’t meant for them.

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“I want to make sure those eligible in Glasgow South West are receiving what they deserve.”

Morgan Vine, campaigns manager for Independent Age said: Many people have no idea this exists and some people find the application process to complex.

But for those who do claimit can make a huge difference.”

Simon Ritchie of Age Scotland, said changes to who can claim is also costing thousands of pounds.

HE said the government changed the rules for couples were one is of pensionable age and the other one is younger.

IT used to be that when the older partner reached pension age they could receive pension credit but now both have to be pensioners.

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He said: “They can be up to £7000 a year worse off with the age changes.”

Eleanor McKenzie of the Scottish Pensioners Forum said there is another fight to be won.

She said: “We have campaigned for people to take up pension credit. It is an entitlement and while it is there you should take it up.

“We should not take our eye off the ball on fighting for a decent level of state pension for everyone.”

Full breakdown:

  • Central - £10.1m
  • East - £11.4m
  • North - £5.9m
  • North East - £11m
  • North West - £7.7m
  • South - £7.7
  • South West - £9.6